Category Archives: Matthew Jacob

B’s Beat: Four Questions Heading Into Bruins Training Camp

Bruins Training Camp

Rejoice Bruins’ fans, the hockey season is almost upon us! The B’s opened up training camp yesterday and I am faithfully here to provide you with four important questions to keep track of throughout camp.

When are the Bruins going to re-sign Torey Krug and Reilly Smith?



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Ah the big one. Before I begin I should probably get this out of the way first: The B’s are not going to trade either one of them, it isn’t going to happen. Don’t believe me? Here is a quote from General Manager Peter Chiarelli during last night’s state of the Bruins meeting with season ticket holders:

“My intention is to have these players playing for the Bruins, and they’re not going anywhere, so I can tell you that and it’s just a matter of working through these things.”

Now it is easy to say that we have heard this type of lip service, but I believe him. Krug and Smith don’t have any leverage. They can’t sign anywhere else, and holding out is honestly hurting themselves as they will lack the necessary preparation for the upcoming season. The B’s obviously want them under contract, but don’t necessarily have the cap space to do so right this second. These two are going to be in the black and gold this season and many others after that. It’s just a matter of making a trade to clear some space to sign them, which leads me to my next question…

Who are the Bruins going to trade to clear some cap space?

Before you start screaming at your computer “Chris Kelly, Adam McQuaid, Jordan Caron, and Matt Bartkowski!”, remember that these aren’t hot trade chips that every team is clamoring for. Both Chris Kelly and Adam McQuaid are coming off of substantial injuries and are going to need to prove that they can still play to build up their trade value again. Caron is literally a throw in to any trade the B’s make, I believe he can be a serviceable bottom six forward given a fresh start somewhere, but he’s done in Boston. We know, he knows it, and potential trade partners know it.

Bartkowski is a worthy trade chip, but his value might be limited due to his pretty terrible playoff performance last season. I believe he is on the outs in Boston and the B’s are looking for the best possible options before pulling the trigger, even if it means some important young players are without new deals. The other possibility is Johnny Boychuk who could simultaneously give the team its biggest cap relief, and garner the best return. However it appears as if it is a last resort, as it seems as if the team wants to retain him for one last run. This situation will be resolved soon, so stay tuned.

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B’s Beat: Bruins Sign Matt Fraser To 1 Year Deal, Invite Ville Leino To Camp

matt fraser

The Boston Bruins announced yesterday the signing of prospect Matt Fraser to a 1 year 2-way deal. The financials of the deal were not disclosed. Fraser was one of the many pieces the Bruins acquired in the Seguin trade, and is expected to make the team this season as a bottom six forward.

Fraser saw limited time with the team last season, but made a big impression with the team in the postseason by scoring an overtime goal in his first career playoff game against the Montreal Canadiens. He showed terrific chemistry with Carl Soderberg and Loui Eriksson in just a short time, and one has to believe that he will find himself on that line in the upcoming season.



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Fraser was one of just a few important free agents the B’s needed to get under contract in time for the start of the team’s training camp. Not to beat a dead horse here, but we are still awaiting the contracts of Torey Krug and Reilly Smith to be announced.

With camp on the horizon, you can expect to see a fury of activity around the hub, as the team hopes to get all of it’s players under contract, so they can have a full camp.

While there is no official deadline for the Bruins to get a deal done with the two crucial restricted free agents, it would still be wise to get them done. Hopefully this small signing of Matt Fraser will get the ball rolling on the others. Keep in mind though, that the B’s have to make a few cap-cutting moves for it all to work.

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B’s Beat: Bruins Sign David Krejci To A 6 Year $43.5 Million Extension

david-krejci

Finally some action! TSN is reporting that the Boston Bruins have signed center David Krejci to a 6 year extension worth $43.5 million ($7.25 Million per season). This is some pretty surprising news given the fact that Torey Krug and Reilly Smith have yet to receive deals for the upcoming training camp which starts in roughly two weeks.

Over the last several seasons, Krejci has developed into the B’s best offensive player. Ever since his arrival in Boston, he has been in the team’s top five scorers over the last five seasons, and led the team in points last year with 19 goals, 50 assists, and a +39 in 80 games.

David Krejci has also been the Bruins’ most potent (last season excluded) playoff performer during the last 4-5 years where they have been legitimate Stanley Cup contenders. Both years the B’s went to the finals, he led the NHL in playoff points.

The extension also makes Krejci the highest paid member of the B’s.

While the contract figures may seem really big in comparison to Patrice Bergeron, Zdeno Chara, and Tuukka Rask; he would have gotten more if he had hit the market following next season. In fact, he could have gotten upwards of $8-8.5 million on a desperate club seeking a proven big game center. Teams always overpay on free agent day. Think I am crazy? Ask Benoit Pouliot.

Another thing to keep in mind is the expected salary cap rise for the 2015-15 NHL season. It is expected to go upwards of $75-76 million. If the cap keeps rising going forward, this deal could become a bargain.

With this extension, the Boston Bruins’ have locked up the two cornerstones to their offensive attack (Bergeron and Krejci) through the year 2021. This is a team built on its depth down the middle, and both of these players exemplify the team’s strong focus on transition, puck possession, and all three zones proficiency.

David Krejci has played his whole career with the Boston Bruins, has a Stanley Cup to his credit, and has competed in two Olympic games as a member of the Czech Republic. He has 110 goals, 268 assists, and a +97 in 504 NHL regular season games, and 29 goals, 48 assists, and a +28 in 93 playoff games.

The extension will keep Krejci in a Bruins’ sweater through the 2020-21 season.

You can follow me on Twitter here: @Mattjacob64

B’s Beat: Torey Krug And The KHL, Kevin Hayes & Simon Gagne

Torey Krug

The Boston Bruins’ off-season is still dragging along, and while the Ice Bucket Challenge was a welcome distraction for a good cause, there hasn’t been much to get excited about so far.

Fortunately the season is only a month and a half away.

The month of August hasn’t been without any excitement though, as Torey Krug reportedly received a “big money” offer from an unspecified KHL team. Rest assured Krug lovers; I don’t expect him to really consider the offer, never mind take it.

Krug has carved himself out a nice niche with the B’s, and had himself a great rookie season which saw him rank fourth in Calder voting, and finished the season with an impressive 14 goals, 26 assists, and a +18 in 79 games. Krug was also a rockstar in the playoffs again for the B’s with 2 goals, 8 assists, and a -2 in 12 games.

The young defenseman also played a big time part in revitalizing a stagnant Bruins’ powerplay. They went from 26th in the NHL in powerplay percentage in 2012-13 with 14.8% success rate, to  third in the NHL last season with a 21.7%. Obviously there are a lot of factors that contributed to this (Carl Soderberg, and Jarome Iginla among them), but credit needs to be given to Krug.

The only way this KHL offer will hurt the Bruins realistically, is if Krug’s agent uses it as leverage. The B’s young puck mover doesn’t have a deal yet, but with training camp only a month or so away, look for a deal to be announced soon.

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B’s Beat: The Bruins Off Season So Far

Torey Krug Boston Sports Then & Now


If you are reading this article, you’ve probably taken a break from one of the most thrilling Boston Bruins’ off seasons in recent memory. Just kidding, it’s been brutal. Not only did they lose one of their best forwards in Jarome Iginla, but they’ve also yet to sign their two biggest free agents in Torey Krug and Reilly Smith.

The sting of losing Iggy is more palpable given the fact that his contract is the primary reason the B’s are in the cap hell they are in. He left town after a President’s Trophy winning season to sign an outrageous contract with the Colorado Avalanche. He has already come out and said that he believes he can win a Cup with the Avs (spoiler alert: He won’t.)

They will miss his character, leadership, and goal scoring ability, but they had to know that it wasn’t going to work out long term given his ridiculous amount of bonuses.

Peter Chiarelli and the Bruins’ brass have also signed two of their own free agents in Matt Bartkowski (1 year, $1.25 million), and Jordan Caron (1 year, $600,000). These are two guys that a lot of fans did not want back for next season, but players that are signed are easier to move via trade.

It has been stated multiple times throughout the off season that the Bruins’ are carrying a ton of NHL ready defensemen and need to deal a few for some assets, cap space, or a right hand on the right wing. It was surprising to see the team re-up Bart and Caron, but I have to believe that they did so for the sake of moving them to another team.

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B’s Beat: Zdeno Chara & The Bruins’ “Window”

Zdeno Chara Boston Sports Then & Now

Is Zdeno Chara’s Championship Window Closing?


The Bruins’ “win now window” is a hot topic in the hub, and I myself think it is a myth. It is propaganda shoved in our faces by the many “hot take” media guys that cover the B’s. It is everywhere you look, it is on the radio, it is on the TV, and it is utterly insufferable.

How does this move help them “win now”? What is Peter Chiarelli doing? Seriously, if I hear somebody ask either of those questions again I am going to climb to the rafters in the TD Garden between Orr and Clapper and take the plunge onto the spoked B.

The Bruins’ window is generally considered to be based on captain Zdeno Chara’s age, level of play, and inevitable decline. There are a number of reasons why this is both ridiculous and completely devoid of facts. For starters; Chara isn’t even the best player on this team anymore. He is their best defenseman for sure, but he isn’t the elite workhorse he once was. Having said that, Z at age 37 is still a better defenseman than about 90% of every other defenseman in the NHL right now.

“But Matt, he has gotten slow and it showed against Montreal last year, and Chicago the year before”. That is a fair point, but don’t you think it is a little irresponsible on the coach’s end to play a 37 year old play for 25+ minutes a night, even though he is a freak athlete? It is really easy to blame the player, but then again I would love to see anybody who calls him slow lace up skates and face the best players on the opposing team every night.

The Bruins plan for last season was to limit his minutes. Dennis Seidenberg tore his ACL and screwed that one up royally (not his fault obviously). So the team was forced to overuse their big man and he was unfortunately exposed. If Seides hadn’t gotten hurt, would that of happened? Who knows, and there isn’t any use in speculating. Hopefully it won’t come to that next season either.

You also can’t avoid the hypocrisy regarding Chara and the “window” too. Most people in Boston consider Big Z ineffective and slow right? If you were to type his name into twitter right now you would see a ton of “trade Chara” people. What I don’t understand is that if people feel as if Zdeno is too old and slow, than why is this “win now window” attitude based on him and the remaining years in his career?

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